A Service of Darkness
April 4, 2012
Scripture: Isaiah 50:4-9a
**How Great is Our God/ How Great Thou Art-Greg and Congregational
Scripture: Psalm 40:11-14,17
Reading 1: Judas
The pain didn’t stop. No matter what he did, Judas could barely lift himself off the ground. It was as if a tremendous weight was sitting on his chest. He felt like he could barely breathe. He leaned against the door of the house of Caiaphas; his hands felt like they weighed a hundred pounds each. When he knocked on the door, the ache from his knuckles passed through his body, and he nearly collapsed. The door opened, and Judas could tell by the way the servant stared at him that he must have looked as bad as he felt. Judas was lead through a hall. The servant constantly had to stop and wait for Judas to catch up. The servant took time into a room where the chief priests sat on the floor around a table. Judas didn’t even recognize the voice that came out of his own mouth:
“What will you give me if I bring Jesus to you?”
They whispered to each other. It didn’t take them a full minute. The oldest of the priests stood and counted out 30 pieces of silver into Judas’ hands. In spite of the cold he felt on his skin, the coins were so hot he thought surely they would brand his palms. When he stepped into the night, he took a deep breath and filled his lungs with air. It was the first deep breath he’d taken since he made his decision. He stood erect, and the pain in his chest and bones was gone. The throbbing in his head subsided. But the coins still felt hot in his hand. He dumped them into a small leather pouch and tied it to his belt. He couldn’t help hearing the coins jingle when he started walking down the dark road. It was an annoyance at first, but soon he was able to ignore it.
1st set of candles are extinguished.
Were you there when they crucified my Lord? Oh! Sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble. –Chanting
Scripture: Psalm 69:1-21
Reading 2: Peter
Peter was the one they called “the rock.” He was the strong one. He was the one all the others leaned on when they began to question their beliefs. But on this night, when Jesus put his hands on Peter’s shoulders, there was pain in the Messiah’s eyes. He was hurt. His face had become heavy and no longer looked like he’d be able to smile again. “Peter,” he said, “tonight you will deny three times that you even know me. “Peter’s first response was that of disbelief. He knew there was no way he would deny his friend! But then he saw the Savior’s eyes. He knew it was true. He knew. Peter’s face then looked determined. He would prove him wrong! He would hide! He would go someplace where there were no people! He couldn’t betray someone if there was no one to talk to, right? Right?
2nd set of candles are extinguished.
Were you there when they nailed Him to the tree? Oh! Sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble. –Chanting
**I Stand Amazed In the Presence-Congregational
Reading 3: The Garden
In the garden, Jesus told his friends to sit and wait for him while he prayed. He walked just a few yards away before falling to his knees. He leaned against a large stone and pressed his tired face on the surface. The night air had become cool-and so was the stone. The sweat on his face and hands began to chill him. Finally Jesus lifted himself on his knees and pressed his hands together so tightly that his knuckles turned white.
“Father,” he said, “if it is possible, I don’t want to die this way. But if you want me to …I will.”
Jesus closed his eyes. He prayed so hard that blood began to seep from the pores of his skin and fall to the ground like thick clots of mud.
HAMMERING-Sound Effect, (I used at mini-sledge and a hatchet in each hand, the sound is a remarkable effect)
3rd set of candles are extinguished.
Were you there when they pierced Him in the side? Oh! Sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble.-Chanting
Video-Are You Amazed!-Featuring the song Your Grace Still Amazes Me, by Philips, Craig, and Den
Were you there when they laid Him in the tomb? Oh! Sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble. –Chanting
**This Service was an adaptation from: The Book of Uncommon Prayer: Contemplative and Celebratory Prayers and Worship Service for Youth Ministry By: Steven L. Case, Zondervan 2002